We’re glad you asked! The introduction is very important.
First, make sure your dog is comfortable in the area that you will be setting up. A dog that is nervous about their surroundings isn’t thinking about play!
Once you’ve set up the lure chase, take your dog to the inside of the course and stand holding onto your dog’s collar or harness about 6 feet away from the lures. When you’re in position, have the lure operator run the lures back and forth in front of your dog to get them excited about chasing while you encourage them.
ONLY when your dog is focused on the lures and looks like they really want to run – release them!
Most dogs naturally understand how to play the game right away, some take a few introductions before they really get the hang of it, and others may even need another dog to show them how! You can also try more exciting lures, such as feathers or a de-stuffed dog toy, if your dog would rather go after something other than a plastic bag.
None! There is no need to do any type of regular maintenance for your Swift Paws machine in order for the motor to run properly.
We do wrap our drive wheels with a protective tape (to prevent the line from damaging the drive wheel) and you will need to replace this once in a while. We provide you with a few replacement packs with your order.
The lures will need to be replaced whenever they get too torn up and slobbery from use, but that’s ok, they’re usually just plastic bags and it’s a great reward to let the dog catch the lure at the end of their run! The line will also need to be replaced eventually, but you should be able to reuse it many times and store it with the line-winder that comes with your order.
Both Swift Paws models run off of regular 110 power. This means you can plug them into any outlet or extension cord.
If you want to run in a more remote area, you can also use a small generator (we have a Honda 2000 that will run our machine nearly all day) or a battery/inverter setup.
We have not experienced overheating with our motors as long as they receive proper ventilation.
If you look at the back of the unit, you will notice intake and exhaust vents on the underside of the top-half. As long as you keep these clear of debris your unit will cool as it runs – it has a fan inside that constantly draws air into the machine and forces hot exhaust air back out whenever the motor is running.
The Sport Model is comfortable with course lengths of around 300 meters (~1000ft) or less. We recommend setting up courses of 100-200 meters for normal use with the Sport Model.
The Alpha Model can run courses of around 600 meters (~2000ft) or less.
Of course, rough terrain (hills, tall grass, etc.) increases drag and can reduce the maximum size course you can run.
We believe dogs – and their owners – enjoy courses of around 500-800 feet long. Long enough for most dogs to reach their top speed, and not so far away that your dog disappears into the grass at the far end of the course.